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12 self-care habits to increase your happiness

Self-care habits are a loving act toward yourself. Self-care is an act that nourishes you, comforts you or aligns you closer with the you that you desire to be. It’s absolutely essential if you want to maintain good mental, physical and emotional health. If you’re looking for self care advice, top tips for self care, ideas for self care and more, this is the post for you.

Self-care is often not a task prioritised on ones’ daily to do list and after the pressure and demands of our work, our social life and our fitness routines, there doesn’t seem to be a huge amount of spare time for anything but sleeping. This is something I’ve been guilty of for years anyway, being too busy for me. This is especially important in 2021 when we are all working from home and trying to be positive throughout the coronavirus pandemic.

Why is self care important?… This could be a question that you are asking. We have to remember to step off of the treadmill that is life and remember to look after ourselves. We need to invest in ourselves, try some self care ideas, and practise being happier.

10 new year resolution ideas for 2021

Every now and then, I take a break. I decide to press pause on the crazy nature of my career to allow room again for the things that feed my soul, with some of these self care ideas. See more about why I take time off in this post here.

Nowadays I’m prioritising things like meditating in the morning and walking to get a coffee. Things like watching Netflix, baking and hosting dinner parties. Things like taking a day off, leaving my laptop at home and catching up with old friends. All these ideas for self care are so so so important, and you should prioritise your self care and mental health too.

Nowadays I’m been able to immerse myself in the things that simply get pushed to one side when my work schedule picks up and I feel so amazing for it. The happiness in the bottom of my tummy is real again and I’m holding onto that feeling as a reminder as to why self care is SO important.

12 ideas for self care that you should prioritise to increase your happiness: my self care top tips…

A guide to exploring Lagos, Portugal

1. Don’t scroll in the morning. Get up and go for a 10 minute walk or bring a coffee back to bed and read a chapter of your book.

It is literally MIND BLOWING how much time we waste on our phones and how much what we set our eyes on affects the way our day goes. Take control of your day. Start it with a positive 10 minutes to yourself or with 10 minutes of fresh air. Don’t let social media and other peoples life’s start your day. Start your own.

For more ideas for self care, check out this post on how to live a happier life. 

2. Practise gratitude. It’s life changing.

You know when you stub your toe and you’re really annoyed about it and then in the next 10 minutes you stub it again and then drop coffee on your fresh bed sheets and then the milks run out… you know what I’m trying to get at. The thoughts you let run through your mind will navigate your mood. Period.

Gratitude is an easy way to kickstart positivity and you’ll start to notice that more positivity will come your way. It sounds cringey, I know. A couple of years ago, if you’d have asked me to write down ‘5 things I love in my life right now’ I’d have thought what on earth is that going to do. But I’ve started this as part of my self-care routine, and it’s really helped me.

Gratitude exercises and ideas for self care:

  • Start a gratitude jar. Every time you feel grateful for someone or something, write it down, fold the paper and pop it in.
  • Once a week write down a list of 10 things you were grateful for this week. Absolutely anything that comes to mind.
  • Start a scrapbook and pop in all your favourite moments. All the things that make you happy. See my scrapbooking tips here.

When you feel sad, dig out the above and it will flip your frame of mind again. Positive breeds positive, always.

3. Plan an adventure, do more of what you love.

On your own / with your bestie / with a group of friends , plan to do something that gets you excited. No, ideas for self-care don’t always have to be by yourself! It could be a long dog walk in a new park, an overnight stay in a quirky lodge somewhere or a sunny holiday. Whatever it is, plan it and look forward to it.

Get inspired to go away in these blog posts!

To keep all your happy memories in one place, check out my guide on how to make a scrapbook here.

4. Don’t push away your emotions, work through them.

In my opinion, suppressing emotions just saves them for a later date.

Not dealing with situations and feelings can leave you feeling blocked and a victim to your own ignorance. Emotions are bloody difficult and terrifying at times but one thing I know is that, we all have them. We all have shit days. We all get our heart broken. Everyone gets lost and confused and feels hopeless at times. It’s how we work through these emotions, learn from them, accept them and rise through them that determines our strength and wider capacity for love.

Speak to someone: a friend, a lover, a family member. Or instead of pushing away what feels difficult, one of my self care tips is to consider going to speak to someone. I’ve written all about counselling and why I love it so much for my own self-care here.

5. Breathe. Get good at breathing.

We breathe without instruction, how awesome is that?! Thank the lord because otherwise half of us might miss it off of our to do list too!! Our ability to deal with certain situations and emotions is largely down to breath control. Notice how your heart rate picks up at the mention of an ex you hate? As you step out to do a bungee jump? When you step out to perform on stage? As you are about to start a race?

Of course you cannot completely overcome what your body naturally fears but you can definitely reduce it significantly if not completely with your breath. Spend a couple of minutes a day breathing deeply into and cleaning out your lungs.

Next time you find yourself in a stressful situation, try counting 10 long deep breaths and see if your course of action is altered by an adjusted, calmer frame of mind. It’s one of my top tips for self care!

Tip: If you can’t concentrate on breathing in silence. Download the Headspace / Mind app and meditate / get calm with their easy to use database. Alternatively, I have Insight Timer which I think is like £50 for the year and has endless courses, guided meditations and talks to listen to.

6. Learn to say no.

Pleasing everyone is an impossible task. It’s draining, it’s never ending and it will leave your cup, often, empty. Prioritising the happiness of others when you haven’t given to yourself first is wrong. Getting your happiness solely from other peoples affection and appreciation of you is nice, yes, but it’s not healthy. You cannot pour from an empty cup. Fill up your cup first and then cheers with your friends and enjoy them too.

Say no, it’s a life changing self care tip and it will never drive away the people that belong in your life.

7. Get outside dammit. Just get outside more.

Resist the magnetic force of technology. Turn Netflix, your phone, your laptop, your tv and your I-don’t-even-know-what off for a couple of hours and GET OUTSIDE.

Smile at people you walk past, go get a coffee and interact at your favourite cafe, take your dog to the park, plan a hike, drive to the ocean.

Fresh air is therapy. It’s free and it’s available to all of us. Possibly the easiest idea for self care on the list. GO GET IT.

7. Tidy your work space and keep things organised

One of my top ideas for self care is tidying up! Tidying up your work space and living space can relieve stress and anxiety. It leaves you feeling cleansed, lighter and more creative. It’s also lovely to know where things are when you want them making you more productive and feeling accomplished.

Read my ’10 top tips and apps for organising your life and mind’ here.

8. Make time for your friends, for your family and for love

Don’t complain about never seeing your friends, about being single or about missing people when it’s well within your control to do something about it. We all have time for what we want to make time for, right? Work smarter, free up time and make time for the things and people that love you. As I said before, self-care isn’t something you always have to do alone.

If you’re looking for how to show someone that you love them, check out this post. 

9. Make your room a sanctuary and sleep more

Redecorate your room and make it somewhere you look forward to coming back to every night. Somewhere that makes you feel calm and safe. Somewhere that prepares you to rest well and recover right. Drop in some fairy lights, buy some plants, treat yourself to new bedsheets or a pillow spray. It’s the little things and the little self care tips that will take you far. How well you rest and sleep can be the difference between a bad day and a good one. Make it good.

Check out my favourite bedtime journal prompts here. 

10. Keep positive visuals in your life

Get a wall print with your favourite quote on (check out my print collection here), print off your favourite photos from your last adventure and frame them, get a new phone case, declutter your instagram friends or download Pinterest.

Keep the good things in front of your eyes and remove the negative ones. It’s such a simple self care idea, and you won’t believe how much of a difference it’ll make until you try it.

11. Eat to fuel your body

I don’t believe in diets, I never last on them anyway. If you tell me I can’t have something, I WANT IT. Food / boys / career – applies all of it lol.

Instead, be grateful for how incredible our bodies are at functioning and think of eating as fuelling it in the best way for all of the things you want to do with it. This is one of those ideas for self care that might seem a little boring, but it’s worth it. If you don’t look after your body, it may not be there for you when you need it most. We only get one.

Put the second pack of biscuits away, head back to number 4 and grab yourself a cup of tea. Hehe!

Check out all the recipes on my blog here.

RECIPE: A warming turmeric, chia and berry oats bowl

12. Take time off and go on a wellness break.

I did this last April and it was honestly life changing. I cannot believe it took me so long to recognise that I needed a break, that I needed time to stop and to relax. It’s one of the simplest ideas for self care, and one that many of us often neglect. Even if you don’t go away on a structured retreat, you can create a DIY wellness break at home.

My week at the The Body Holiday resort, Saint Lucia

If you’ve never meditated before, check out my FREE complete guide to meditation to learn how to stay present.

How do you practise self-care?

What ideas for self care would you add to this list? Any self care tips? Look after yourself!

Love as always + happy adventuring,

Mollie.

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Ideas for self care: 12 self care tips and habits
Ideas for self care: 12 self care tips and habits
12 self-care habits to increase your happiness12 self-care habits to increase your happiness
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ITโ€™S LOVELY TO MEET YOU

Iโ€™M MOLLIE AND I STARTED THIS BLOG BACK IN 2013 WHEN I HEADED OUT ON MY FIRST BACKPACKING ADVENTURE.ย 

I’D LOVE TO SHARE THE JOURNEY WITH YOU, WE’VE GROWN A LOT SINCE THEN!

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